Fatal First Love – Rediscovering ‘Claudelle Inglish’ (US 1961 – 99 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Aug 23, 2014

Based on the 1958 novel by ‘Tobacco Road’ author Erskine Caldwell, the gripping soaper ‘Claudelle Inglish’, is a sadly forgotten and rather sensationalistic drama. Also known as ‘Young and Eager’, it tells the sometimes sordid tale of an innocent teenager who rapidly goes off the rails after being unceremoniously dumped by her first love.

After being jilted in a letter by her boyfriend, 17 year old Claudelle Inglish (Diane McBain) wastes little time in hooking up with any man who shows any interest in her. Meanwhile, rich widower; S.T. Crawford (Claude Atkins), a slobbish landowner and boss to Claudelle’s hardworking father, …

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Anyone for Hugs? – Rediscovering ‘The Children’ (US 1980 – 93 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Aug 18, 2014
Anyone for Hugs? – Rediscovering ‘The Children’ (US 1980 – 93 mins)

A low budget quickie that’s fairly entertaining; the moody chiller ‘The Children’, gets off to an intriguing start and almost manages to hold up to it’s promising premise. It delivers some decent shocks and, while it’s not up there with the excellent ‘Who Can Kill a Child?’ (’76), I think it’s one of the better in the long line of ‘killer-kid’ flicks.

In the small town of Ravensback, when their school bus passes through a toxic cloud (caused by a leak at a chemical plant), all the children on board are turned into zombie-like creatures with black fingernails. Anyone who …

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The Italian Job – Rediscovering ‘Blonde in Black Leather’/”Qui Comincia l’Avventura” – (Italy 1975 – 101 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Aug 15, 2014

Also known as ‘The Adventure Starts Here’, the funny and enjoyable Italian romp ‘Blonde in Black leather’, is a cheerful frolic through rural Italy, featuring two of Italy’s most enduring and beautiful stars.

Mysterious, leather-clad Monica Vitti, rides into town on her motorbike, where she encounters Claudia Cardinale’s bored laundry worker. Ditching her humdrum life, Cardinale decides to join Vitti’s experienced traveller, and before long they are embarking on a wild adventure across Italy, weaving through traffic and dodging police as they venture forth on their quest for excitement. Along the way they lose their bike, accidentally kidnap a boy …

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Bald, Bold & Bad Ass – Remembering Woody Strode (1914 – 1994)

Posted in Remember by - Aug 08, 2014

6’4” athlete turned actor Woody Strode, brought his muscular, powerful presence to everything from big budget Hollywood productions to cheap, lesser-known exploitation fare. He was also notable as being the first African-American to play a heroic lead in a big-scale Hollywood western.

Born in California on July 25, 1914, Woody’s screen career began with minor parts in the Gene Tierney western ‘Sundown’ (’41) and the romantic comedy ‘No Time for Love’ (’43). After playing the lion in the Jean Simmons picture ‘Androcles and the Lion’ (’52), he was the king of Ethiopia in Cecil B. DeMille’s ‘The Ten Commandments’ (’56), and …

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Team Spirit – Rediscovering ‘Unholy Rollers’ (US 1972 – 88 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Aug 06, 2014

An excellent drive-in feature with a great cast and exciting action scenes, ‘Unholy Rollers’ is an enjoyable and sometimes amusing sports drama with a tough edge. Filled with violent skating scenes and a rather downbeat ending, it stars the irreplaceable Claudia Jennings in a down and dirty role.

Fed up with her factory job and sleazy boss, Karen (Claudia Jennings) quits and puts all her energy into a new career as a roller-derby skater. Passing some local try-outs, she is signed up for her local team; ‘The Avengers’, and quickly finds herself a natural at the sport. A born competitor, spirited …

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Teenage Tootsie – Rediscovering ‘Just One of the Guys’ (US 1985 – 100 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Aug 05, 2014

The mid Eighties was the most prevalent time in the US for producing high-school comedies. From ‘Risky Business’ (’83) to ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ (’86), they made stars of the likes of Tom Cruise and Matthew Broderick, but also entertained audiences worldwide. A lesser known movie (outside of the US at least) that came mid-way in this period is the rather sweet comedy ‘Just One of the Guys’, a funny and feel-good entry in this highly popular genre.

To prove her theory that college sexism is to blame for her not getting a journalism internship, Terry Griffith (Joyce Hyser) goes undercover …

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Swords, Sandals and Serial Killers – Remembering Sylva Koscina (1933 – 1994)

Posted in Remember by - Aug 01, 2014

Sweet looking with a fair degree of talent, Sylva Koscina had a film career I’ve always found interesting. Mixing Hollywood, European and Art-house, for three decades Sylva certainly kept herself busy on both sides of the Atlantic.

Born in Yugoslavia on August 23rd 1933, Sylva moved to Italy during the Second World War, later studying physics at university. She was spotted in a photo by controversial director Pietro Germi, who cast Koscina in his 1956 feature ‘The Railwayman’. With her career taking off, Sylva’s early films were low-brow Italian comedies and sword & sandal pictures, such as ‘Hercules’ (‘58) and …

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When Time Ran Out – Rediscovering ‘Strongroom’ (UK 1962 – 80 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Jul 31, 2014

One of the very best of a vast bunch of taut British crime pics from the early Sixties, ‘Strongroom’ is an expertly paced thriller that’s very well acted for a low budget movie. It even manages to throw in some unexpected twists, leading up to a very memorable conclusion.

As a bank is closing for the long Easter holiday weekend, three small-time crooks, Griff and brothers Len and Alec Warren, arrive to rob it. Locking the bank manager and his secretary in an airtight safe, they soon make for a clean getaway. Later, overcome with conscience and fearing that the …

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“Andrea is back” – Rediscovering ‘Even the Wind Is Afraid’ (Mexico 1968 – 88 mins)

Posted in Rediscover by - Jul 29, 2014

An almost unheard of gem, ‘Even the Wind Is Afraid’ (‘Hasta el Viento Tiene Miedo’) is an excellent Mexican horror featuring abandoned towers, mysterious photos, and eerie night-time scenes full of rain and howling gales.

Set in a posh boarding school for girls, student Claudia (Alicia Bonet) has been having repeated nightmares where she hears her name being called out in the dead of night. Her dream takes her to an old tower in the grounds of the school, where she sees the body of a girl hanging from the rafters. Along with classmates, Kitty, Yvette, Marina and Flavia, they begin …

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As Young as You Feel – Rediscovering ‘Mr. Belvedere Rings the Bell’ (US 1951 – 87 mins).

Posted in Rediscover by - Jul 28, 2014

The second sequel to the very popular 1948 domestic comedy ‘Sitting Pretty’, ‘Mr. Belvedere Rings the Bell’ is my favourite of the three Belvedere movies. It’s a quaint little film with a wonderful group of elderly characters, all coming to realise that just because you’re old, it doesn’t mean that you should lose your sense of fun and learning.

Lying about his real age in order to get a place in a senior citizens home, Lynn Belvedere (Clifton Webb), the charming, self-proclaimed genius, goes undercover to carry out a study about the values of growing old. His entertaining tales and exaggerated …

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